Grecco should know fate March 9

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Belleville Intelligencer

19 January 2010

By JASON MILLER The Intelligencer

Donald Grecco is still awaiting is fate. 

The former Roman Catholic priest and convicted child molester should know by March 9 if he will be brought back to the Quinte region from a Hamilton jail to have the Crown stay charges laid against him for an October bail violation. 

Grecco is currently serving an 18-month jail term for the child molestation charges. Following his Dec. 13 sentencing, it was recommended Grecco serve his time at a Brampton jail that specializes in providing extensive treatment for sexual offenders. 

 Justice Geoff Griffin has openly voiced his concern that bringing Grecco to the Napanee jail could hamper his chances of being expediently admitted into a correctional facility that offers remedial programs for sexual offenders.

Griffin said during Wednesday’s court date bringing Grecco here could potentially cause the 70-year-old to lose his spot on the waiting list. He said Grecco will not be getting the “benefits of sexual counselling,” while he’s being held here. 

Grecco was absent for the second time this month for his appearance in the Picton provincial court for breaching his residency requirements while he was released on bail on the child molestation charges. 

He was ordered to remain at a Prince Edward County address to await his sentencing after he pleaded guilty in March to three counts of gross indecency. 

Grecco already served 21 days for the breach following his arrest by Prince Edward County OPP in October. The St. Catharines man was released from the Napanee jail Nov. 5. 

Griffin expressed that the disgraced ex-priest, who is in jail for abusing three altar boys in the 1970s and 1980s, was already released on the grounds that he served sufficient time for the breach. 

Crown attorney Jodi Whyte admitted that while she did not totally disagree with Griffin, “there are powers above me that disagree,” and she was simply acting under the advice of her superiors. 

Michael Blum and James Hennessy, two of the victims who were abused some 30 years ago, have both filed $3 million lawsuits against the ex-priest.

In the lawsuit documents filed, Blum alleges abuse and negligence. When Blum’s lawyers attempted to serve Grecco with the lawsuit papers, they could not find him as he wasn’t at the address where he was supposed to be. 

He was later found and arrested by Prince Edward County OPP. The civil suit claims haven’t been proven in court. 

Grecco was ordained in 1966 and served as a pastor at St. Kevin’s and St. Mary’s churches in Welland, St. George’s in Crystal Beach, St. Alexander in Fonthill, St. Vincent de Paul in Niagara-on-the-Lake, St. Thomas More in Niagara Falls and St. Stephen’s in Cayuga. Grecco was in his 12th year as a priest when the abuse began. 

6 Responses to Grecco should know fate March 9

  1. Sylvia says:

    What is going on here?

    Justice Griffin apparently wants to wash the slate clean as far as Grecco’s breach goes. Then this:

    Crown attorney Jodi Whyte admitted that while she did not totally disagree with Griffin, “there are powers above me that disagree,” and she was simply acting under the advice of her superiors.

    It sounds like there’s a bit of a tug-of-war going on here? The judge doesn’t want to pursue the charges. The Crown doesn’t really want to pursue the charges. But someone in the AGs office wants the breach charges pursued?

    I’d say it’s welcome news that someone in the AGs office wants the breach charges pursued, but if the Crown who is assigned to prosecute agrees with the judge that Grecco has served sufficient and the charges should be stayed, why is Whyte acting as the Crown prosecutor? and why is Griffin sitting on the bench for this case?

    I don’t understand this at all. Grecco was in detention for 21 days because he couldn’t get surety. How does that equate to time served for a breach of residency while on bail?

    • Mike Blum says:

      I could not agree with you more Sylvia, Grecco has not served time for his breach. He spent 21 days because he could not get bail arranged, he has not yet been held accountable for the breach. Why does this convicted child molester get simpathy again, he is in Brampton when he should be in Millhaven, he got a light sentence and now he is getting the benifit of the doubt again. It really makes me wonder what side the justice system is on.

      Mike

  2. John Mac Donald says:

    Power plays like what is going on here intrigue me. I look a little deeper to see who is behind the scenes when I see something like this happening. One look behind the curtains finds the following……

    Justice Geoff Griffin………..his immediate boss would be Justice Peter Griffiths (Associate Chief Justice of the Ontario Court of Justice).

    Crown Attorney Jodi Whyte……..Being located in the Eastern Division of Ontario Crown Whyte would be located in Murray MacDonalds’ catch area as head of Crowns for Eastern Ontario.

    I will be watching this play out.
    John

  3. Reality Checker says:

    I watch this site daily – not only do I adore Sylvia and all that she does but John – you are something else!!!

    Interesting coincidence John!!!

  4. Newfoundland Dog says:

    John, I wish you nothing less than perfect vision because it’s people like you we need keeping an eye on the ball.

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